Northwestern Medicine Scholars Summer Intensive Focuses on Pediatrics 101

Northwestern Medicine
For Students July 22, 2018

The Northwestern Medicine Scholars is a program for freshmen through seniors at George Westinghouse College Prep who are interested in pursuing a career in medicine or the biomedical sciences. Westinghouse, a selective enrollment high school located in East Garfield Park, is ranked in the top 10 percent of Chicago Public Schools (CPS). The program is very competitive and has a rigorous application process including mandatory teacher recommendations and an in-person interview.

“It’s important to give the Northwestern Medicine scholars unique opportunities, and spending time on our medical campus, we’re able to show them what it’s like to work in academic healthcare, which is a new experience for many of these students,” Kaitlin Brown, the Program Coordinator, said.

Each year, Northwestern Medicine hosts a four-week-long summer intensive for the students. The first three weeks of the program focus on a certain area of medicine and the fourth week is aimed at preparing the students for college. This year’s program, which runs from July 9 to August 3, is focusing on pediatric medicine.

During the first three weeks of the summer intensive, the students participate in variety of activities, including lessons, guest lectures and clinical tours. In addition, there are non-medicine based cultural activities aimed at diversity, inclusion and wellness. Etiquette classes are also offered.

“When discussing diversity in the health care workforce and subsequently solutions to address disease disparities, invariably, discussions addressing the pipeline come up,” said Clyde W. Yancy, MD, MSc, vice dean, diversity & inclusion, Magerstadt Professor of Medicine, and chief, division of cardiology at the Feinberg School of Medicine. “Many bemoan a seemingly thin pipeline. However, engaging with the Northwestern Scholars changes the narrative. These are among the most talented students anywhere motivated by a drive to achieve excellence and to subsequently become leaders in their chosen pursuits and among their peers.”

Fatima Ortega, a senior in the program, said her favorite part is the hands-on training. “It makes me feel like I could actually do this,” she said. Ortega plans to study chemistry in college and hopes to become an emergency medicine doctor.

“You get to see things from a different perspective. It’s like a whole different world,” Ortega said. “It really teaches you to not take any opportunities for granted.”


Weiland Wang, another senior in the program, wanted to join the Northwestern Medicine Scholars because of his passion for helping people. “I wanted to know how it works and wouldn’t be able to get this experience anywhere else.” Wang also plans to study chemistry in college, but hopes to pursue a career in medical research.

“We get exposed to so many different interesting people and medical fields. The whole program really helps us achieve a higher degree of maturity and professionalism,” Wang said.

“This is the kind of long-term investment that answers questions and provides best solutions to address the future of health care,” Dr. Yancy said. “I am delighted that Northwestern Memorial Hospital has made this important investment in our future.”

To learn more about the NM Scholars, please visit or email



Check out these NM Care Areas: